All Articles Tagged "safety"
First dates, or dates in general, can be nerve wrecking, anxious, and exciting all at the same time. For many of us, we are going out with a guy we are actually interested in and want to make a good impression. For the rest, maybe it’s just for a free meal. Either way, there are always a lot of things to think about before you go out on with someone. Like these 14 things.
The air is starting to get crisp, the leaves will fall soon, and people are relishing in the football season. Fantasy leagues are in full swing and viewers across the country are chomping at the bit to get a little NFL action.
I hate this time of year.
For one thing, I don’t really understand football. The idea of 200 pound men knocking the crap out of each other doesn’t appeal to me, even if they do have on tight, print-revealing pants. For another thing, I used to live in Pittsburgh. If you’ve been to Pittsburgh, you’d know that there is one immutable law:
- You will root for The Steelers.
It doesn’t matter if you grew up in a Ravens household, or if you hold the Dallas Cowboys dear to your heart. When you are in Pittsburgh, you are for the Steelers. Even if you are not a fan of the game, cleaving to the Steelers is a way to find common ground with anyone from the 412. It’s just a part of their culture.
When I moved there in 2007, I was both baffled and amused at how deep the ties were to the football team. I bought some Steelers paraphernalia just to blend in – nobody is going to question your loyalty if you’re wearing a Polamalu jersey. Let me illustrate how real it is: if the Steelers win game on Sunday, on Monday business professionals, from companies like PNC Bank and Alcoa, wear Steelers jerseys over their suits. Only after moving out of the ‘Burgh did I realize that it is not the only place where football is king. America is addicted to the sport.
Among my friends I am the odd woman out. Most of my homegirls love football, and have warned me about what would happen if I interrupt their NFL fix with my chatter. My boyfriend is a rabid San Francisco 49ers fan. On a recently trip to North Carolina my boyfriend and I attended a high school game and while everyone else was in the bleachers caught up in the ecstasy of the blows, I was waiting for the clock to run out.
The reason my relative boredom with the game turned into a full fledge dislike is that a few years ago I noticed an uptick in the press around its dangers. The high-profile suicide of San Diego Charger Junior Seau and other NFL players in recent years have forced American football fans to acknowledge the scary outcomes of playing a collision sport. A recent New York Times article highlighted the findings of the journal Neurology, which indicated that football players have an increased risk of death from diseases like Alzehimer’s and Parkinson’s. Even though professional players are getting millions of dollars, their bodies are still sacrificed to fans and owners who want intensity on the field.
What is even scarier is that it’s not just the pros that are playing rough. High school and college kids are out there playing with force too. I want kids someday, and if I have boys, I fear for their safety if football is still as popular as it is now. Because the sport is such a large part of American culture opting ‘out’ can have an ostracizing effect, and I’ve gotten more than a few sideways glances when say that I don’t want my kids playing football. The reality is that I wouldn’t want my son subjected to the physical hell that professional football players seem to suffer as a result of the roughness of the sport. In my eyes, it’s not worth the sacrifice, and the sport is not a game.
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.com
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The Buffalo Bills safety that is George Wilson might not be as well known as a Reggie Bush or your Michael Vick when it comes to hotties in the NFL, but he should be! With his light eyes, slick bald head and delicious lips (don’t forget about that beard), he could be a model. Maybe that’s why he’s been showing up in so many fashion editorials and music videos (“Hood Love” with Mary J Blige, “Late Nights & Early Mornings” with Marsha Ambrosius). So what exactly is this hunk of a man working with? Let’s take a look why don’t we?
I know it has to be hard for men. They’re always expected to make the first move and be the pursuers, yet they run into many women who rebuff their advances with the quickness, ignore them flat out, or yell at them for being a bother. Yeah, I get that it can’t be easy. However, there are just some ways of “hollering” that need to be banished. First on the list? How about trying to spit game at a girl when she’s walking home alone after 12 a.m.?
In my neighborhood in the city, sometimes you’ll find me walking the streets late in the evening (or early in the morning) after kicking it with girlfriends or hitting up festivals and events. Because of that, I’ve learned three important things when it comes to navigating my way home after dark, and they include the following: Walk fast, ditch the headphones, and always have my keys ready to open my door…or in case I need to jab a creeper in the eye. As a woman, you always have to be on guard for someone waiting to abduct you, assault you, rob you or follow you home, and because I live about three long blocks from my train stop (about a seven minute walk if I move fast, three if I run), I’ve gotten used to being paranoid. On the way to the train very late one evening, I had a man in a rapist-looking van drive slowly next to me and ask if he could give me a ride. According to him, I was too pretty to be walking the streets by myself. What he didn’t know was, I was also too smart, even in the slight downpour that had begun, to get in his car and go anywhere with him. I said “No thanks!” picked up the pace with these long legs and took extra long strides until he finally drove away. As uncomfortable as all of that was, it wasn’t as alarming as the time a young man actually followed me as I walked home to try and “holler.”
It was about 12:30 a.m. and I had just got off the train and was headed back to my place. I had my headphones in but planned to take them off once I got outside of the train station. So when a guy in the station tried to get my attention I really couldn’t hear him. I looked back very fast to see if someone had said something, as I didn’t want to slow play in the grimy station (which reminded me of that one scene from The Wiz) and saw no one right behind me. But as I walked up the steps, I felt like there was someone following me. I looked back and saw a man trying to rush up the steps behind me, and he tripped on the second step. Something about his clumsy behavior reminded me of a drunkard, and at that time of the evening, unless my a** was exposed or I dropped my wallet, there wasn’t anybody on those streets who had a reason to stop me to chat. So I put even more pep in my step, snatched out my headphones and did a speed walk that would make those Olympic power walkers proud. But lo and behold, as I came up the stairs, this man was running up the stairs, and as I got down the street, he was jogging in my direction. There were no police cars around to flag down, so I tried to cross the street to be sure that I wasn’t losing my mind (“Is this guy really about to try follow me home???”) and as I crossed, he crossed and cut me off near the middle of the street. Getting tired, and frankly, a bit pissed, I put my house key in between my middle and ring fingers, and decided that if he was going to abduct me, he was going to have to be ready for a fight first. As I turned around, ready for something out of a movie to happen, this is what he said:
“Heeeey, how you doing? What’s your name with your pretty self?”
Before I knew it, I was in the middle of the street screaming at him: “WHY ARE YOU FOLLOWING ME!?” The man who had just tried to play smooth Casanova in the street was now a bumbling, somewhat scared fool: “FOLLOWING YOU!!? Ain’t nobody following you! I was just trying to talk to you for a second! I live down the street, what you mean “following” you!?” As he walked away from me in a huff, talking ish on the way, for a second there, I thought I might have overreacted. But then, I remembered that this was the same fool running down the street after me 20 seconds earlier. While he might not have been following me with the intent to harm me, he was indeed FOLLOWING me, and doing so while I was alone on an empty street at 12:30 a.m. By the time I got home, I was still shaking from the worry I had felt at one point, and the sheer tomfoolery of the whole situation. To be frank, I was grateful to be safe, yet enraged at his behavior. Is that how you approach a woman???
Look here men: I don’t care if Halle Berry is walking down the street in her birthday suit at 1 a.m., you don’t pull a stunt like this. Late at night when a woman is walking home or anywhere alone, you need to leave her be, because while you might think that you look like Rico Suave, chances are, you probably look like a murderer to her. Your advances most likely won’t get the response you’re looking for (except maybe from the thirsty chicks), and instead of getting us excited, these attempts to come on to folks can be very frightening. I don’t know when people started assuming that this was acceptable behavior, but it can get a guy just trying to innocently woo a gal a face full of pepper spray, or in the case of my fool, a bruised ego. In a society where roommates are killing roommates, husbands are offing wives, and women are being kidnapped in broad daylight from Target stores, it’s hard to trust anybody and assume their intentions are harmless. At 2 a.m., you might just want my number, but I might think you want my life. Therefore, brothers of all backgrounds, please refrain from thinking with your junk and think with your heads next time you believe that the nighttime is the right time to get your mack on.
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Does it matter to a woman if the man she is dating is a virgin? Do women prefer men with some sexual experience, or are they willing to teach inexperienced men about sex?
These questions can be of concern for a number of men who are trying to regain, sustain, or maintain a life of purity. There is a concern because some women may view men who are virgins or practicing abstinence in a less than masculine light because men are expected to be sexually aggressive. The women may view them as men who are afraid of physical intimacy, impotent, homosexual, or men who have something to hide. Remember all the buzz and suspicions about brothers on the down-low?
With the possibility of these thoughts lingering in a woman’s mind, a man’s ego and confidence may suffer. On the other hand, there are many women who may not be alarmed about dating men who are virgins or practicing abstinence. These women may view men who are virgins or abstinent as men who are sexually responsible, disciplined, and have established standards that are set apart from societies sexual standards for men. In these cases, a man’s ego and confidence is reassured. In a brief case study, a number of women were asked to list the pros and cons of dating men who are virgins and men who are abstaining. The results on the following pages gave many pause as to what how important or unimportant sex was in a relationship.
From proper application to proper storage, some tips for ultimate condom mastery.
No matter what you call them—rubber raincoats, love gloves, etc.—condoms come in pretty handy. Scratch that, they come in incredibly handy. What other piece of latex do you know that helps prevent disease and pregnancy while simultaneously stimulating “for her pleasure”?
The “how to” for condoms seems pretty simple, but as with all sex-related necessities, some complications may arise. Luckily for all of you who didn’t get a complete rundown of “Captain Condom” in your high school health class, here are a few must-know facts about those little love gloves to keep your sexual sailing as smooth as possible.
Want to take in all the tips? Visit YourTango.com.
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You’re expecting. And if one of the biggest life changes you’ll ever experience wasn’t enough to stress you out, you’ll probably soon get an earful of hospital horror stories courtesy of the world-wide web and even some close friends. You’ll hear about the perilous pressure to have unnecessary C-sections and epidurals that caused more pain than they relieved. Throughout all this you may start to question your options and what kind of delivery will work best for you. Many women are choosing to forego the traditional hospital delivery altogether in exchange for a home birth with the assistance of a midwife and/or doula. But should you doula or is this experience a delivery-don’t for you?
In her article, “Why You Should Have Your Baby at Home, and Not at a Hospital” writer Charing Ball broke down how the expensive cost of hospital births, women’s increasing lack of medical coverage and expectant mothers’ high dependency on Medicaid funds have all led to more women seeking out alternative birthing options. Many women, like me, though can’t picture having a baby anywhere but a hospital. While I’d like to imagine the often portrayed natural bliss of giving birth to a baby in a tub of water surrounded by loving friends and family in the comfort of my home, I’m still terrified at the thought of, “What if?” And while medical technology definitely has its faults and biases, why not take advantage of something that many women in third world countries wish they had access to? It’s true, women’s bodies are simply doing what they were made to do since the beginning of time before episiotomies and epidurals. In the U.S., however, midwives and doulas lost their status at the end of the 1800′s, and doctors took over the reins. With knowledge about hygiene and the latest medical procedures, doctors had a higher success rate of keeping both mom and baby alive than midwives did. Yet in this day and age, you truly have to question whether your doctor is doing what’s best for the health of you and your baby or what’s more convenient for his/her schedule. Don’t be quick to assume that because you’re in a hospital with medical staff who have years of schooling behind them that you will have a safer more “professional” experience. Your choice of a midwife or doula doesn’t mean you’ll have a barefoot yogi chanting with candles either. Although, homebirths are viewed as more “natural” you can choose to have the procedure be as laid back or structured as you want it to be.
If you’re considering having a home birth with the assistance of a midwife or a doula (Midwives oversee the medical parts of the birth, including the actual delivery, while doulas provide constant emotional and physical support and comfort to the mom-to-be.) For example, you could choose to have the assistance of a doula even if you opt for a hospital birth since they are mostly present for emotional support, but a midwife is necessary if you choose to have a home birth with no doctor present.
All births are different, even for individual women, so even if a home birth was a positive experience for your first-born you may not feel the same way about your next pregnancy. The following pros and cons might help you decide works best for you:
A tragedy occurred earlier this week in the area of Lakewood, N.J. While running around in the backyard of her home and frolicking with her siblings, a 2-year-old girl accidentally fell into an open septic tank and drowned. When the little girl disappeared unexpectedly while the kids were playing, her worried mother, Marina Matias, reported her missing around 5 p.m. on Monday. When the police came to the home and searched around the area, they noticed a 3-foot wide, open septic tank in the ground and called the Public Works Department to pump water from the tank. Sadly, a few hours later, the little girl was found inside it.
An autopsy was just done, and as you were probably thinking, it was confirmed that the cause of death was accidental drowning. Though the little girl was playing with her four siblings, and the tank was not far from the back door of the home her family was staying in, no one heard or saw her fall. It’s not clear why the septic tank was open for her to wind up in, but sources say the house itself was in pretty bad shape. Neighbors actually thought the family would have left it behind way before the little girl drowned in the backyard.
When you let your children run around with their brothers and sisters, you always hope they’ll be and stay safe, but sadly, that was not this case in this situation. Really sad circumstances. Please watch out for your babies people, because anything can happen in the blink of an eye.
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I stumbled across this comic a couple of weeks ago and all I could say was “Amen!” This illustrator really and truly gets it.
And by “it,” I mean what it’s like to be a victim of street harassment. For most of us by the time we’ve hit puberty, (if not before), we’ve been subjected to the cat calls, the tactless pick up lines, the comments on our boobs and backsides more times than we’d like to remember.
I’ll never forget being in the mall with my mother one weekend. Wearing a pair of colorful denim shorts, I had to have been about eleven or twelve. We were near a jewelry kiosk when a man on a cell phone interrupted his conversation to state to no one in particular, “Whew, look at that A$$.” The A$$ he was referring to was mine.
That was the first time a grown man had ever made public mention of my body. As a girl I used to daydream about what it would be like to gain the attention of the male kind. I just knew it would be flattering, intimate, and welcomed. Suggestive, yet respectful.
The complete opposite of that mall interaction.
As women, I don’t have to tell you that such attention is annoying, threatening and worst of all degrading. I wish I could say that the foolishness stopped there; but that would be a lie, it only got worse. Today, every time I leave my apartment, I put on what I call my “don’t Fawk with me” face and hit the streets of New York. As much as I loathe the winter, I can’t help but be grateful that my puffy, mid-calf length coat curbs some of the harassment. But not all of it.
Last winter, I stepped out around 6:30 p.m. on what had to have been the coldest night of the year. Ever conscious of my grandmother’s pneumonia warnings, I was bundled up like no other. Literally, the only things visible were my eyes. And still, a man getting off the bus, couldn’t restrain himself. “Aye.” And then louder, when I ignored him, “AYE!”
All I could think of was let me get as far away from this fool as fast as possible. Later, when my fear subsided, I realized these men must not understand how threatening their hollas, their “compliments” can actually be. In reality, I’d guess that most street hollerers aren’t dangerous. They’re just horny men who’ve had luck with that approach a time or two and therefore continue to use it on any and every woman who catches their eye. And that’s the problem.
Didn’t this man getting off the bus that night realize that I was a woman alone on the street, in the dark? Why would he feel that situation was the time to try to approach me, a complete stranger? How many rape scenes resemble that scenario?
I fear that the street “hollerers” aren’t the only men who don’t get it. As the comic illustrated, when you tell a “regular dude” about the happenings of your day, don’t be surprised if he responds in complete ignorance. This has happened to me personally. He literally said, “I would love for women to hit on me in the street.”
Sure, men don’t receive compliments on their physical appearance like women do and they think that sucks. But they don’t know how good they have it. It’s not complimentary, it’s threatening. What wouldn’t I give to walk the streets in peace? The point is, many men lack a general awareness of how exhausting it can be to just have a vagina in public.
I know I don’t speak for just myself when I say that as women, we spend a lot of our time out on high alert.
As sad as it may seem, there’s always this sickening cognizance and fear of what could happen if you’re not as aware as you should be, if you take a wrong turn, if you walk past the wrong person at the wrong time, hell, if you’re with the wrong person at the wrong time.
As great as it is being a woman, it’s scary too. If more men knew this, I like to think they’d be less inclined to assault us on the street.
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As much as some would like to think that Halle is trying to take little Nahla to France with her out of some sort of spite against Gabriel Aubry, and other media sources claim she wants to do so because she’s engaged to boyfriend Oliver Martinez, she says her hopeful move is to escape the threat of violence against herself or her family.
Berry filed the request to move to France with her daughter because, according to E! News, two men who are no longer locked up for stalking and threatening the actress are now out of jail. One who was actually convicted and sentenced to over a year in prison was released on Saturday, and while there is a 10-year restraining order against the guy to stay away from Berry and her family, she’s not feeling the concept of sitting back and relaxing to see what will happen next. In her complaint, she had the following to say about the man, whose name is Richard Franco:
“This person has invaded and trampled upon the most fundamental sense of security I have and I am extremely frightened of him and what he might do to me and those I love.”
On top of that, a man who was put in a mental hospital in ’96 after threatening to slit both Madonna and Berry’s throats (Madonna’s people shot him after he found his way on her property in ’95), escaped from a mental hospital last week. The fool was finally apprehended by police this afternoon.
This is some crazy mess straight out of the movies. Before folks jump to conclusions about her, I think we can all admit that this is a good reason to be worried or to want to move–however, I don’t know if France would have been my first thought for house-hunting, no matter how fabulous the place is (and yes, it’s very fabulous). I think from all the photos that have been taken of her, Halle needs to step up the security game around her, because she’s usually alone when she hits the streets for errands or goes out with Nahla. That might be the better idea as opposed to going far away from Gabriel Aubry and all that she’s used to. But I guess only she knows what’s best option or idea for herself and her baby. What would you do in this situation?
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